2019 Annual Meeting
Washington, D.C.
June 5-8, 2019
Power in Agricultural History

The Agricultural History Society Annual Meeting Postcard

Celebrating the 100th Anniversary of the Agricultural History Society 1919-2019

Program & Schedule

The 100th anniversary meeting of the Agricultural History Society will be held in Washington, DC, an appropriate location to address the theme of “Power in Agricultural History.” The first meeting of the society was February 14, 1919 at the Cosmos Club, less than a couple miles from our conference location, The Hamilton Hotel. We have made some changes to our regular conference schedule to take advantage of increased participation and our interest in celebrating the 100th birthday with as many members as possible.


A draft of the program is now available for download here.

Local Information

Things to do in D.C.
Anne Effland’s Local Restaurant Guide


Wednesday, June 5:

  • Tours: All-day bus tour or half-day walking tour are available. Details below.
  • Executive Committee meeting: 2:00 p.m., Hamilton Hotel
  • Welcome Reception, open to all meeting registrants: 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Thursday, June 6:

  • Opening Plenary followed by regular sessions throughout the day

Friday, June 7:

  • Regular sessions throughout the day
  • Presidential address, open to all as part of the regular program

Saturday, June 8:

  • Regular sessions throughout the day
  • Business meeting, open to all AHS members
  • Centennial Reception, evening, open to all meeting registrants. We will recognize award winners during brief presentation.

We will post the full program in the coming months.


Online registration is closed. You will be able to register in person in Washington beginning Thursday morning.

Full conference registration includes access to the opening night reception, all sessions, the opening plenary, the presidential address, and the 100th Birthday Celebration on Saturday night. Each registrant will receive two drink tickets usable at the opening reception or Birthday Celebration. Single-day registrants will receive access to sessions and special events on the day they register only.

On-line registration will go live in early February with an early-bird discount for those who register before March 30. Regular registration will close May 1, though walk-up registration will be available at the conference.

Early bird registration (before March 30)
AHS Member $180
Non-Member $240
Single Day $125

Registration (after March 30)
AHS Member $200
Non-Member $260
Single Day $150

Agricultural History Society Annual Meeting Stay Venue


All conference sessions and receptions will be at the historic Hamilton Hotel, located in the heart of DC only a few blocks from the White House. The society has negotiated a special conference rate of $239 per room night. You may make reservations via this link or at 866-407-1764.

If you call, mention Agricultural History Society Annual Meeting to access our rate. Our reserved room block is not enormous, so we advise that people make their reservations immediately.

A limited number of rooms are available for Tuesday night at the conference rate. If you are attempting to reserve a room via the web link and it shows that no rooms are available, be sure you’re selecting Wednesday night as the start of your stay. If any of the nights you are attempting to reserve are outside of our block it will show no rooms available. If you are unable to book at the conference rate there will be non-discounted rooms available or you may wish to book at an alternate location for that night.


There are two exciting tour options for Wednesday, June 5, 2019, an all-day bus tour that will cost $40 and a free (registration required) walking tour.

All-day bus tour ($40, includes box lunch. You must-pre-register via conference registration before May 1)

Our full day tour option will feature visits to USDA's National Agricultural Library and Beltsville Agricultural Research Center, as well as the Agricultural Experiment Station of the District of Columbia, all just a 45-minute bus ride outside of the Washington Beltway in Beltsville, Maryland. We will start the tour at the Abraham Lincoln Building, home of USDA's historic library collection, now the National Agricultural Library. The visit will include an introduction to the regular collections, a treasure trove of materials accumulating since the mid-19th century, as well as an overview of the Special Collections Division's range of manuscript and visual collections. Those who wish to remain at NAL to use the collections for the remainder of the day may do so, and be picked up by the bus on our return to the hotel at the end of the day. If interested in this option, you can find information on NAL's collections here .
Prior arrangements are recommended for those who wish to use materials from Special Collections, so that their small staff can have research materials ready for your use. The tour will continue across the street at the historic Henry A. Wallace Beltsville Agricultural Research Center, where we will visit both old and new facilities, meet with scientists, and learn about the past and present of agricultural research at USDA.
Finally, we will move to the Firebird Research Farm, the designated Agricultural Experiment Station for the District of Columbia and associated with the University of the District of Columbia, DC's land-grant university. The research farm is focused on sustainable urban agriculture practices and features hydroponic and aquaponic production systems. The tour will leave the Hamilton Hotel at 7:15 a.m. and return to the hotel around 6 p.m., depending on traffic.

Half-day walking tour of US Department of Agriculture and the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History (free, pre-registration required)

Tour begins at 1:00 p.m. and returns approximately 4:00 p.m. The tour is free, but you must pre-register by emailing before May 15.

Total Tour Time: +/- 3 hours.

Location : meet at the entrance to the Smithsonian Metro Stop on the National Mall at 1:00 pm

Guides : Shelby Callaway at USDA and Peter Liebhold at NMAH The USDA tour will focus on how the USDA’s priorities and physical presence in Washington have evolved over the past 150+ years with a special emphasis on the USDA’s relationship with the National Mall. The tour includes a discussion of the USDA’s art and architecture, the political history of the buildings, and a look inside the Whitten Building, South Building, and the Sidney R. Yates building (US Forest Service Headquarters.) The group will then walk across the National Mall to the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History. This portion of the tour will include a curator led tour of the exhibition and public programs and a look at the back of the house. The NMAH will also include a look at some unique agricultural holdings from the Smithsonian’s collections in the museum’s conference center.

Graduate Student Funding

Over the past decade, the Agricultural History Society has given more than $75,000 to support graduate travel to the conference. This year we will continue that support by offering $250 to graduate students who have a paper accepted and attend the conference. Students awarded the grant will receive the money as a check, in US dollars, at the conference. Please complete this form and email to before May 1, 2019.

Rural Women's Studies Association Breakfast

The RWSA breakfast will be in the morning on Thursday, June 6 from 7:15 to 8:20 at the Hamilton. The cost is $10 for graduate students and $15 for all others. Pre-registration is required before May 1. Please email Jim Giesen to register at